Luke Joeckel Injury A Devastating Blow For Jacksonville Jaguars

By Joey Farbo
Jacksonville Jaguars Luke Joeckel
Melina Vastola-USA TODAY Sports

It is hard to say that there is a player on an 0-5 team that is hard to replace, but the Jacksonville Jaguars may have lost their most important players during Sunday’s loss to the St. Louis Rams.

Jaguars rookie left tackle Luke Joeckel was ruled out for the rest of the season after suffering a broken ankle and now the team will be stuck with playing two backups at the tackle positions along a struggling offensive line for the rest of the season. With the injury, the Jaguars have now lost both of their starting tackles in less than a week as they traded Eugene Monroe to the Baltimore Ravens last week for two 2014 draft picks.

Sunday was Joeckel’s first NFL start at left tackle, the position that he played in college, after starting the first four games at right tackle and struggling at times. In his short time on the field on Sunday, Joeckel looked very comfortable back at his old position and showed why the Jaguars think he is a foundation piece for the franchise moving forward.

While having Joeckel on the field was not going to make much of a difference in 2013, having an experience left tackle out on the field in 2014 would have gone a long way towards helping out whoever the Jaguars new quarterback is next season. With only a little over a quarter of left tackle experience, Joeckel will essentially be a rookie again next season.

The Jaguars will now be forced to start Cameron Bradfield and Austin Pasztor at tackle. Bradfield has experience as the Jaguars starting right tackle in 2012, but will likely play left tackle while Pasztor will get a chance to play right tackle. It will essentially be an 11-game tryout for both guys to show that they can be a part of the Jaguars offensive line moving forward.

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